The Effects of Anxiety Are Your Starting Point for Healing
The effects of anxiety are your starting point for healing, even though they are many and miserable (These Awful Effects of Anxiety Must Stop). Anxiety affects us physically, mentally, and emotionally. Anxiety can disrupt our lives in profound ways, preventing us from being who we want to be and doing what we want to do. Anxiety exists on a spectrum from mild to severe, but whether it is a disturbance or a disorder, the effects of anxiety are negative and far-reaching. That said, they're good, too, for the effects of anxiety are a starting point for healing.
Anxiety and anxiety disorder are terms that refer to our experiences, both our internal existence and our external interactions with the world. These experiences involve thoughts, feelings, and behaviors, and the effects of anxiety on our entire being can be extensive.
Starting Point for Healing -- Some Effects of Anxiety
Anxiety is a very individual experience; indeed, two people might have social anxiety disorder, but each one will experience it slightly differently because their thoughts, feelings, and behaviors are personal. While the specific effects of anxiety vary from person to person, they generally involve our relationships with ourselves and others, as well as every system in the body (Anxiety in the Body: Physical Side-Effects of Anxiety).
Anxiety causes effects such as
- digestive discomfort/troubles
- increased need to use the bathroom
- profuse sweating
- increased heart rate and/or blood pressure
- respiratory troubles
- aches and pains
- low self-esteem
- reduced sense of self-efficacy (belief in yourself and your abilities)
- over-thinking everything
- difficulty concentrating
- relationship problems
- loneliness and isolation
Use the Effects of Anxiety to Heal
Anxiety's effects, as horrible as they are, can be your ticket away from anxiety. Any one of the effects of anxiety can be a starting point for healing on the journey toward wellness and an anxiety-free life. It may seem counterintuitive, but it isn't; the more hurtful an effect of anxiety is, the more helpful it can be in transcending anxiety.
Listen to your body. Attend to your thoughts. Become fully attuned to your emotions. Be aware of the quality of your relationships. How is anxiety messing with each of these areas? The more specific you are in identifying the effects of your anxiety, the better able you'll be to use the effects against anxiety.
How to Ease the Effects of Anxiety and Heal
Once your awareness of your anxiety's effects on you and your life moves from vague to specific, you can make a plan to conquer anxiety. The plan is straightforward: meet anxiety where it is and uproot it.
Identify. What effect of anxiety is most bothersome? Starting with one is manageable.
Plan. What actions can you take to reduce this effect? Create an intentional plan of action that involves multiple approaches, such as calming techniques, exercise, social connections, and more.
Act. With a specific action plan, you can now take charge of your anxiety. Actively addressing the problems anxiety is causing gives you the upper hand.
By working on the effects of anxiety, you're uprooting it at the base. This is a very effective starting point for healing from anxiety.
NCC, T. (2016, August 18). The Effects of Anxiety Are Your Starting Point for Healing, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2019, July 17 from https://www.healthyplace.com/blogs/anxiety-schmanxiety/2016/08/effects-of-anxiety-are-a-starting-point-for-healing
Author: Tanya J. Peterson, MS, NCC
My own particular challenge is not with anxiety specifically but with bipolar, however, I have found that there is a lot of overlap and so I am going to study this plan and see how I can apply it.
In the meantime I am going to pass this along when I can.
However, I have found that since those anxious thoughts are so irrational, it is hard to have a rational conversation about those thoughts with a person who is affected. Would you have any suggestions on how to start such a conversation?
I'm so glad that you found this post to be helpful -- and that you're going to pass it on to others. I definitely encourage you to apply this to bipolar disorder (and any other mental health challenge, for that matter). After a traumatic brain injury, I was diagnosed with bipolar disorders and anxiety disorders. I used, and continue to use, this strategy and have found it to be very effective. I've used it with others, too, and people have found it workable. I strongly believe that you will, too. :) Your other point is a very good one. Anxious thoughts really are irrational, and it can be hard to reason with them. You might be interested in the article Six Ways to Reason Anxiety and Anxious Thoughts Away (http://www.healthyplace.com/blogs/anxiety-schmanxiety/2015/05/six-ways-to-reason-anxiety-and-anxious-thoughts-away/). Aside from that, it can be very helpful when talking to someone affected by anxiety to focus not on the anxiety itself but on what they would like to replace it with. Helping them clarify what's important to them, to envision a life filled with passions and things/people that are important, and then to plan little steps to take every day to get there is a great way to get around anxiety's roadblocks. Rather than arguing with it or trying to reason with it, talk about replacing it with something better. That can inspire hope and be very motivating. All the best to you and to the person/people you are talking to about this!
Great post! There is some excellent advice here. During my diagnosis I had trouble with the 'acting' part. You see I had a great plan but I was afraid to act on it.
My Panic Disorder turned to agoraphobia. I was afraid to leave the house. I had to take 2 months off work.
Thanks to my loving wife and therapist we slowly sorted that out. I met my fears head on and started getting out more. I did have panic attacks but fought through them. It wasn't easy though.